Advanced Search

Learn About The Holocaust

Special Collections

My Saved Research




Skip to main content

Crematorium tag, number 5896, acquired at Dachau postwar by a US soldier

Object | Accession Number: 2003.112.18

Search this record's additional resources, such as finding aids, documents, or transcripts.

No results match this search term.
Check spelling and try again.

results are loading

0 results found for “keyward

    Crematorium tag, number 5896, acquired at Dachau postwar by a US soldier


    Brief Narrative
    Unused clay crematorium disc with the number 5896 acquired by 22 year old Lt. Charles Rudulph, United States Army, during a July 10, 1945, tour of the crematorium of Dachau concentration camp near Munich in Germany. This type of disc was placed with a body to identify the ashes after cremation. The numbers do not correspond to prisoner numbers. Rudulph found it in what he called the murder house, with the cremation urns in a cellar between the room where bodies were stored and the ovens. Dachau was the first concentration camp established by the SS in March 1933, originally for political prisoners. Over time, other groups were interned there, including Jehovah's Witnesses, Roma, homosexuals, repeat criminal offenders, and Jews. The camp was liberated by American forces on April 29, 1945. Rudulph, an officer in the 106th Infantry, entered combat in France in November 1944. He was wounded during the Battle of the Bulge but rejoined his unit. After Germany surrendered on May 7, he was posted to Straubing with Battery X, 566th AAA Battalion.
    found:  1945 July 10
    found: Dachau (Concentration camp) after liberation; Dachau (Germany)
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Ramona A. Rudulph
    front, center, imprinted : 5896
    Subject: Charles C. Rudulph
    Charles Clinton Rudulph Jr. was born on March 24, 1923, in Cleveland, Ohio, to Charles Clinton and Catharine Jacobs Rudulph. His family moved to Wilmington, Delaware, where he graduated from P.S. DuPont High School. Charles was attending Beacom College when he enlisted in the US Army in July 1941. He joined the Coast Artillery Corps or Army Mine Planter Service, Panama Canal Department. On December 7, 1941, Japan bombed Pearl Harbor and, a few days later, the US declared war on Japan and Germany. After a year and a half, Charles returned from the Panama Canal Dept. to attend officer training school in Fort Benning, Georgia.

    Lieutenant Rudulph was assigned to the 106th Infantry Division, which was activated in March 1943. The division deployed to the European Theater of Operations in November 1944, landing in Le Havre, France. In December, they were in St. Vith, Belgium, to relieve the 2nd Infantry on the rugged, hilly border with Germany. Charles was wounded in the early days of the Battle of the Bulge and sent to England to recover. Most of the 106th were captured by the Germans. It is not known when Charles rejoined the division. In February 1945, the 106th crossed into Germany, then back into France where they processed German prisoners of war. The division was regrouping near Mayen, Germany, when the war ended with the German surrender on May 7. For his service in the postwar military occupation, Charles was stationed in Straubing, Germany, with Battery X, 566th AAA Aw Bn (Anti-aircraft, automatic weapons battalion.) During this time, he made two visits to Dachau concentration camp near Munich. During his first visit, he toured the camp with a former inmate, a German who had been a prisoner there for four years. They viewed the crematorium and storage areas, and Charles became ill seven times during the visit. His second visit was July 15, 1945, and he served as guide for a group of other soldiers.
    After his return to the US, Charles enrolled in the University of Delaware. On September 18, 1946, he married Irene Hazel West, from Bournemouth, England, whom he had met while recuperating from his wounds. They had two children. He and Hazel divorced in December 1974. The same month, Charles married Ramona Boudreau White. Charles, 79, died in December 2002 in Clarkdale, Arizona.

    Physical Details

    Identifying Artifacts
    Object Type
    Name tags (lcsh)
    Physical Description
    Circular, offwhite clay tag with overall light brown discoloration, with a coarse, porous surface and a mold seam around the center edge. It has an oblong recess in the center with an imprinted number, 5896, digits tilted right, and a circular hole near the top. The back has a blank, oblong recess with a chip and a dark brown spot.
    overall: | Depth: 0.625 inches (1.588 cm) | Diameter: 2.500 inches (6.35 cm)
    overall : clay

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    No restrictions on access
    Conditions on Use
    No restrictions on use

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    The badge was donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2003 by Ramona A. Rudulph, the wife of Charles Rudulph.
    Funding Note
    The cataloging of this artifact has been supported by a grant from the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany.
    Record last modified:
    2023-08-25 17:06:43
    This page:

    Download & Licensing

    In-Person Research

    Contact Us